My interests in consciousness expansion and women's spirituality span decades. In fact, they are, in part, linked to some early childhood experiences— memories that have influenced me to later explore women's connections to the divine, mythology, folklore and the realms of the unseen. One memory I vividly recall is the loving presence of the sky blue-cloaked statue of the Virgin Mary on my mother's mahogany dresser shining in her field of luminous grace and glory, smiling down at me. This experience left a deep impression. Here was a being in liminal space watching over me. Another memory, perhaps one of my first, was of the feeling of unbridled joy while being a fairy, waving my magic wand while flying around our home in the Berkshires. It was a sensation I vowed to remember (and cultivate).
Intensely curious about the workings of the mind since early adolescence, I would regularly visit the local old stone library. Many long hours were spent trying to make sense of books on philosophy, psychology and metaphysics. Then, at fourteen, I discovered the writings of Alan Watts. Reading the "The Way of Zen" set me on what turned out to be a lifetime path inspired by Eastern religions.
Immediately after high school, I moved across country to the Haight-Ashbury district of San Francisco, home of the Counterculture Movement. I embraced free-spirited living, began a meditation practice, learned massage and various healing methods, experimented with hallucinogens, creative dance, fashion design, and communal living with other like-minded seekers.
My continued interests in Eastern religions, ancient and current East/West healing traditions, women's cultural, feminist and spiritual history inspired me to travel to sites dedicated to the sacred feminine in Greece, female deities and dakini sites in India and Nepal, as well as to lands associated with the ancient Amazons in Eastern Europe and Russia. Along with travel, studies of my ancestral roots have contributed to the deepening of a 'personal mythology.' Through advanced studies, I earned degrees in Archaeomythology (B.A), Women's Spirituality (M.A.) and a Ph.D. in Philosophy and Religion with a concentration in Transformation and Consciousness from the California Institute of Integral Studies, San Francisco.
Unexpectedly in 1992, I experienced a spiritual emergence through a series of frequent spontaneous lucid dreams that lasted over thirteen years. In these dreams, I met with spiritual teachers and wisdom guides in various forms and received healings, transmissions and gifts of insight. I wrote about these experiences in my book, "Guardians of the Gate: An Investigation of Numinous Presence, 'Visions of the Divine,' in Dreams," which is based on my doctoral dissertation.
Currently, I continue to investigate the archaeomythology of ancient goddess cultures and folklore traditions in Eastern Europe. In my private counseling/healing practice, I use methods derived from Tibetan Buddhism, non-dual Kashmiri Shaivism, Bon, shamanism, Transpersonal Psychology, women's spirituality and hypnotherapy. Periodically I offer private guided pilgrimage tours in Nepal. At present, I reside in Boudhanath, Nepal and Northern California with my British artist husband, Christopher Castle.